While some states are beginning to lift stay-at-home restrictions, many still have shelter-in-place ordinances in place. Many Americans are now homebound and facing several weeks (at least) of lockdown. Experts are recommending that we only leave our homes for outdoor exercise and for essentials, such as shopping for groceries and medicine.
In order to do our part to “flatten the curve,” it is important that we make as few trips as possible to the store, keeping our shopping efficient and streamlined. But if you’re only stocking up on toilet paper and hand sanitizer, you could be missing the mark.
What else should you be buying?
Get Your Gardening Supplies
With spring here, it’s the perfect time to purchase lawn and gardening essentials. Along with basic lawn care, many people are also starting coronavirus “victory” gardens, growing their own veggies and herbs rather than relying on store-bought goods. Hence, from seeds to soil to shears, gardening and lawn care essentials deserve a starring role on your quarantine shopping list.
Take Care Of Fido
Most pet owners remembered to stock up on food and litter, but you may have forgotten other healthcare essentials for your pet. Veterinarians say that pet-owners should have at least a month’s worth of flea, tick and heartworm medication on hand. And animal experts advise pet owners to purchase pee pads or sod/grass patches for their home or apartment if you aren’t able to get out as often to walk your dog due to quarantine. Pet toys like puzzle boxes are also a good idea for keeping bored doggies entertained.
Cover Up Those Roots
Whether you just like to cover your grays or you need to keep your red hues rich, the quarantine can be a crisis for your color. Stocking up on hair dye is easy via the Target or Walmart app, and drive-up will save you the risk of going inside. Or turn to Overtone for a color-depositing conditioner that will be shipped right to your front door. And many hair color addicts swear by Madison Reed which offers salon-quality hair dye without the expense of a salon visit.
Stock Up For Spring Cleaning
Smart shoppers will also stock up on several other oft-forgotten essentials, including laundry detergent, dish soap and other household cleaners. While hand soap was quickly scooped up by anxious buyers when the coronavirus pandemic first began, many shoppers may have forgotten to also pick up several weeks’ worth of dish-cleaning and laundry-cleaning essentials.
While many clever at-home hacks will help you make your own laundry detergent or household cleaning supplies at home, you may prefer to save time and elbow grease by just buying your favorite brands while you’re at the store.
Faster Internet For Your Home Office
Whether you are working from home, helping your child manage school lessons online, or simply keeping in touch with loved ones via video chats, it can be very frustrating to deal with slow Internet. And, right now, the Internet is more overloaded than it ever has been before, meaning that your Wi-Fi could be slower than ever. But there are many ways you can improve your Wi-Fi connection, including getting a new router or getting a Wi-Fi extender for rooms in your house that have the most Internet trouble.
Make A Wish
So many spring birthday parties have been put on hold because of the quarantine, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate the birthday boy or girl. Make sure to stock up on supplies like birthday cards, wrapping paper, birthday candles, balloons, and other party necessities. With Amazon shipping dates on delay and stores like Party City shut down, parents and grandparents have to plan ahead when trying to make their little one’s big day special.
And the same is true even if you’re celebrating someone who is turning 60 instead of 6. Make sure to keep special birthday stationery on hand so you can mail cards to your loved ones who have spring birthdays. Make their day as bright and filled with love as possible, even if you can’t be there in person.
Skip The Water Bottles
Instead of buying bottled water (which can do horrific damage to our earth), experts advise that we buy water purifiers or water boilers instead. This way you’ll have clean water on hand without harming the environment.
Leave Food For Other Shoppers
Finally, remember that while it’s important to have an up-to-date first aid kit, menstrual products, basic over-the-counter medications and pantry staples like rice, pasta and beans, you really don’t need to hoard food and medicine. Legislators are asking shoppers to please be considerate of other people in their community and to leave food for others to buy, rather than hoarding several weeks’ worth of food in their pantry.
“It’s appropriate to buy food for a week, as we do,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said recently to his constituents. “But to buy so much food for a month, or even for months, has a consequence not just for you but for your loved ones, for grocery workers, and of course for those who are most vulnerable and who need food right now.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a full emergency checklist to help you stock up on necessary essentials, along with a list of questions to help you and your family create a safety plan during times of crisis.